Cargo traffic at major ports falls 4.6% in FY21

Cargo traffic at major ports falls 4.6% in FY21

Only two ports -- Mormugao and Paradip record growth during the fiscal year

 Representative image. Credit: iStock Photo

Cargo traffic handled by India's 12 major ports has declined by 4.6 per cent to 672 million tonnes for the fiscal ended March 2021 as Covid-induced lockdowns disrupted the import and export activities during the year. The shortage of ships and containers also disrupted the cargo movement.

The cargo traffic at major ports stood at 704.92 million tonnes during the previous fiscal, according to data compiled by the Indian Ports Association (IPA).

Among the 12 major ports, only two ports -- Mormugao and Paradip ports managed to record growth in their cargo traffic during the year, while ten other ports recorded dip in their traffic. While Mormugao port has recorded 37.06 per cent growth at 21.95 million tonnes, Paradip port has recorded a marginal growth of 1.65 per cent at 114.54 million tonnes of cargo.

Kamarajar (Ennore) port recorded a sharp 18.4 per cent decline in its cargo operations, while Visakhapatnam port recorded the lowest decline of 3.9 per cent in its cargo operations during the year 2020-21, IPA data shows.

India has 12 major ports under the control of the central government -- Kolkata, Paradip, Visakhapatnam, Kamarajar (Ennore), Chennai, V.O.Chidambaranar, Cochin, New Mangalore, Mormugao, Mumbai, JNPT and Deendayal. New Mangalore, the only major port in Karnataka, registered 6.7 per cent decline in cargo movement at 36.5 million tonnes as against 39.14 million tonnes of cargo handled during the year 2019-20.

Mumbai port has recorded 12.1 per cent decline in cargo movement at 53 million tonnes, while JNPT has moved 64 million tonnes of cargo, thereby recording a decline of 5.32 per cent over the previous year.

Petroleum products like crude, LPG/LNG, iron ore including pellets, finished and raw fertilisers, coal (thermal and steam), and other liquids are some of the major commodities handled by these ports.

Among the commodities, the coal (thermal & steam) traffic has come down by 15.4 per cent to 78 million tonnes during the year. The movement of iron ore and pellets has seen a sharp rise of 29 per cent during the year as 71 million tonnes of the key steel-making raw material was exported.